21Sep 2017

How Can a Small Business Having Modest Budgets Use Big Data

Big data is the big term around us.

If you are not doing big data, it means that you are way far behind in technology.

But, don’t you worry; you can make the best use of big data standing within the boundaries of your budget.

Wondering how?

It is easy! We can get it done!

And, now chill I will take you through tried-and-proven techniques that experts have been implementing to get things up within a tight budget.

Regardless of how small your business is you can now utilize big data. Just remember one thing – big data is not something that only big business heads can do, but everyone can get their hands on this big data and utilize it for taking their business to the next level with high-end efficiency.

Let us find out what are you losing if you are not using big data –

A number of your competitors including – big, medium and small-sized ones are already utilizing big data. And, if you are not then, you are losing considerable amounts of data related to customer behavior as well as the latest trends that are hitting the market.

These are the two most important factors that you must be able to access if you are planning for developing strategies for your business that will work and take it toward the door to success.

But, unless you have sufficient data that comprises of information on market trends and customer behaviors how will you prepare yourself and your business to deliver what your customers want.

Also Read:11 Top ways to turn your customers into brand promoters of your website

Unless, you are going to provide them with what they want, how can you say that you are offering a customer-driven service that supports and assists them, ensuring life is at its best with your solutions that are custom-made.

I know what you are thinking right now – how is it possible to get your hands on so much of data which needs a huge investment, consulting workforce and time when you are struggling hard to call yourself a business.

Yes, there was indeed a time when small and medium sized businesses struggled to get their hands on data that mattered and was crucial to the success of their business, but no longer now.

You can get data that is vital to your business with a high level of ease and efficiency without investing a lot of money regardless of whether you are a small or big business.

In fact, it might not be an unknown factor that emerging trends such as cloud computing, open source software and other technology have change the way we perceived things and now almost all small businesses are aware of the fact that they can change the tone and face of their business with this big thing – big data.

If you are unaware of these progresses in the world of data and data accumulation, then, it is nothing to worry about, but folks, you are going to lose it if you delay it further. So, let’s get going and find out how this can be utilized for the purpose of our businesses with minimal investment like others have already done.

How do you start?

1. Defining goals

Defining goals

We all have some kind of goals when we start a business. These goals transform into our vision and the path to this transformation into vision through achieving small-time goals is mission.

But, there is the big picture – our dreams!

To help small businesses to grow into your big dreams, we need to work on acheiving and reaching goals.

The funniest part is a number of people spend most of their time getting their hands on data that is not at all important to their business.

The simple thing that their missing out here is aligning their business goals to data that is relevant to help them achieve their business goals.

The most crucial part here is defining your business goals. Once you have that defined you know very well what your needs are and you will go looking for data that is of relevance to helping you accomplish business goals.

The data that you accumulate should give insight into your business while it should also help you comprehend with analyzing the latest business trends and then, finally guiding you through taking action that will help you accomplish your business goals in the end. What’s the ultimate result when you have your actions and inferences synched in?

A business that has succeeded at all levels! This is the final outcome.

When you have data that is related to just your business goals and projects, then, you are already cutting on all the extra dollars that will cost you all the unnecessary crap which you will trash at the end of sorting out through the data that you collected.

All you will keep with you is the data that is actually relevant to your business.

2. Never underestimate the resources you have got

Many a time it happens that we already have a lot of resources with us and knowingly or unknowingly, we are not utilizing these. Instead, we all go behind something that is too expensive and highly irrelevant to our business.

So, why does that happen and how do we tackle this?

The most important point to keep in mind here is none of the resources that you have with you starting from and including – data output, data analysis, data storage and data sources – comprising of the four key elements of any business and it’s infrastructure are something that we miss out.

These are in fact powerhouse of resources that is necessary to build your business and you will get all that you need from here.

Stop looking outside for external resources when you have so much with you already.

For instance, people are already submitting relevant information to you through the newsletter subscriptions that they are signing up on your website. Then, why do you want something new from other source.

Don’t waste your money and time when all that you need is already with you.

3. You can save on expensive software

You can save on expensive software

A lot of businesses are into investing money on unnecessary things like software that is too complicated and literally, most of them have no idea about how to operate these to utilize them for the benefit of their business.

These people end up spending a lot of time, money and effort unnecessarily on these expensive technologies that could be replaced with something simpler and time-affective and lastly, with something that is affordable.

A number of open source software is available these days. It is free of cost. The sweetest thing about these open source software is that it has been specifically designed to be used for working on big data tasks that has been bothering you for a long time and you had left all hopes because you had no money.

Hadoop and similar software have been helping people to regain their beliefs that sweet things exist and the best things in life are sweet because it is affordable and involves less effort. You can implement it across all big data tasks that you are performing.

The interesting part about these open source software that are available for free is you can execute these on off-the shelf hardware that are also equally inexpensive and easily fit into your budget.

If you see, a number of people around you are already implementing Hadoop because it is easily accessible to everyone no matter whether they are a large, small or medium sized business.

All you need is an expert who can help you with the tasks. It is important to have expertise knowledge on the hardware and software part to utilize it fully in the right way so that it provides you with details relevant to your business.

If you have little or no knowledge about these open source software we would recommend that you take some time out and invest it on learning further on how to set up the free software and get it to act and function across as per your desires of taking the business to the next level.

If you can relax on your budget, then, you can possibly use the enterprise versions of the software which are the versions of the free package that has been tailor made to function as per your business and it’s requirements.

If nothing works out consider hiring a professional expert who will help you with the entire process of setting up and getting it work without any break.

4. Big data is far beyond what you see. Explore the unseen

There are a number of companies that have come up with excellent big data services that are built upon cloud platforms. The main intention of these big data solutions is to help other businesses and companies to sort out their related business issues with the data that is being acquired via the cloud and the similar software that they have been implementing all this time. So, now you know how big data provides a ray of hope for even the smallest of businesses as it is one of the many methodologies that they can employ to get their hands on the vastly laid oceanic resources that is otherwise difficult to reach out to.

This is the point where Big Data as a Service comes into the picture.

Heard of Big Data as a Service or BDaas?

It is kind of a vague term that is generally in use these days and mainly refers to the number of outsourcing services that mainly comprises of big data operations that are being leveraged to the cloud computing system. A lot of companies are offering the BDaas services these days. Some are too expensive while there are those that fit into your budget with ease.

There are the ones that offer a complimentary package of Big Data as a service that involves all kinds of consultation as well as advisory solutions that are mandatory for your business to survive the competition that takes a new and fresh state every day.

All this includes a number of things that includes supplying analytical tools that helps you to rummage through data that is pertinent for your business and also, tools to help you refine the ones that is mandatory to your business and then, drafting out reports to finally, developing the reports that you need to maintain. These reports will help you cross-check the tasks that you have accomplished and also, examine the ones that you have missed.

It usually happens that when you have no access to the big scenario of big data you really have no idea of what is happening and how to operate across all these. But, with Big Data as a Service you are freed of all these difficulties that might crop in the way preventing you from utilizing big data for good.

When you already have the BDaas take care of your big data needs, you do not have to worry about anything else such as expertise or familiarity with big data because BDaas is here to help and it allows you concentrate on other important tasks much easily without any other botheration.

With BDaas you already have everything necessary for your business to harness the data all set and all you do is get their cloud-based storage and analytics engine hired for a particular duration of time. Here, you just have to pay them for the time during which the engines are functioning to harness data relevant to your business. Also, BDaas helps you to relax as it takes care of the extra charges that are spent on compatibility and data security issues when the data is stored elsewhere apart from the BDass  provider’s servers which are not safe.

A number of big heads have been utilizing these services and slowly small businesses are shedding off their shyness and embracing the change that big data is bringing about. If a number of small businesses come over to the limelight and are ready to pick up these services, then, there will be a number of companies that will come up with ideas and services to help support them in their venture.

Also, since there are many of them providing Big Data as a Service, customers have a lot of choice and they will choose the one that offers lower subscription rates, high quality services within qualified turnaround time that is least expected.

So, if you are on a low budget, then don’t think more this is the time you could possibly choose big data as a service for your business and start turning over the gold mine that will bring you a fortune.

Listed below are a set of tools that you could use to implement big data for your small business:

1. Google Analytics

 Google Analytics

This tool was around us all this time and we have never ever thought of it as a big data tool that could help harness us all the information that we need.

In fact, if you have observed it has been gathering all that information all this time.

It actually records all your interactions with the visitors who access your website and gives you insights into the information that they have left behind which is very much important to your business.

This involves a wide range of metrics including the clicks, time on site, exits, and the number of visits, etc.

Heat maps are one of the other most commonly used tools to gain insights into those areas of web pages that are mostly clicked through by people. These are the visual or diagrammatic representation of what people like to do while on your site.

Apart from Google Analytics here, are some really interesting tools that you are unaware of but can be utilized for your business:

2. Lead generation

So, if you have plans for lead generation, then, this is one of the best tools that you need. It will help in lead generation which is very much important from the business perspective for your business.

Using this tool you can generate the target list of prospects that will help in business sales.

While there are those tools that offer outdated information, Radius is something that you can use to get information of more than 30,000 leads which are fresh and updated recently.

You can download the results in CSV formats.

3. Crazy Egg

Crazy-Egg

Yes, folks, there are those areas in your web pages that are liked most by visitors. The challenge is to find the position and point on your web page that is driving them to your website.

But, don’t worry, here is a tool called the Crazy Egg that is specially designed taking into account small businesses and their struggles.

Here, with the help of this tool which belongs to the company by the same name co-founded by the online expert Neil Patel highlights the areas of your webpage in bright colors and other visual identity representations to help you identify what people like most on your website.

4. Identifying the purchase behavior

This is one another tool that you need to be implementing today to get hold of information that is essential for running your business. And, with no doubt this information is nothing but the purchase information.

It helps to identify sales promotions and their impact on people.

5. Predictive customer behavior

Have you ever come across this term ‘predictive customer behavior’?

We have all wished at some point of our business process only if we had a tool that would help us identify how our customers behave.

Yes, there is such a tool that will help you identify very well how your people are bound to behave and this tool is referred to as the ‘Canopy Labs”.

These are some of the simple and yet unknown facts that small businesses are unaware of, but you could possibly now utilize it for the benefit of your business and do what all others are doing.

Do you need help with utilizing big data for your business?

We can help you.

Acodez IT Solutions is a big data analytics company based in India offering a wide range of big data analytics and other web design services to our clients in India and abroad. We are also into providing all kinds of digital marketing services to our clients. For more information on our services and solutions and how we can offer you with tailor made solutions to help you take your business to the next level, contact us today.

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Vipin Nayar

Vipin Nayar

Vipin Nayar is the Digital Marketing Head at Acodez. As a Social Media, SEO & SEM expert with over 8 years' experience in online marketing, he uses his keen insight into customer behaviour to formulate innovative strategies that helps clients enhance their online presence & open up new business avenues.

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